World News: EU finance chief reveals plan under way to bail out Ireland

Plans are being made for a potential rescue programme to bail out the Irish government, if it asks for help, the EU's finance commissioner says.

Olli Rehn told reporters the plan would have an "accent on restructuring its banking sector".

His statement came at the end of an emergency meeting of eurozone ministers and financial institutions in Brussels.

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Finance ministers from all the 27 European Union countries are set to meet shortly.

Yesterday's emergency talks came against a background of renewed financial market turmoil.

At the centre of this has been the markets' fear that the governments of the weaker eurozone countries - particularly the Irish Republic - would not be able to afford to repay their debts.

Mr Rehn said that "the Irish authorities are committed to working" with the EU, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund.

A statement by the eurogroup praised Ireland's efforts to combat its problems. It concluded: "We confirm that we will take determined and co-ordinated action to safeguard the financial stability of the euro area, if needed".

Qantas hit by more trouble

A bird and a bolt of lighting have struck two Qantas planes and caused more problems for the Australian airline.

A spokesman said a Boeing 747 bound for Sydney turned back to South Africa after a bird slammed into one of the engines, and a 717 was hit by lightning during a domestic flight.

Russia slams extradition

Russia has described as a "blatant injustice" Thailand's decision to extradite alleged Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout to the US to face charges of conspiring to sell weapons.

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Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov said it was the result of unprecedented American pressure on Thailand.

Mr Bout arrived in New York last night after Thailand backed the US request following a long legal battle.

He was arrested in Bangkok in 2008.

Leader condemns maid torture

Indonesian president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has demanded justice for the "extraordinary torture" of an Indonesian maid in Saudi Arabia.

Sumiati Binti Salan Mustapa, 23, is in a stable condition in hospital. Her injuries include gashes to her face, allegedly inflicted by her employers using scissors.

OJ makes fresh bid for retrial

OJ Simpson's lawyers are asking a three-judge Nevada Supreme Court panel to reconsider whether the ex-football star should get a new trial after his armed robbery and kidnapping conviction in Las Vegas.

They argued that justices overlooked or misunderstood several key arguments.

protesters hold masks of Aung San Suu Kyi during a rally near Manila in the Philippines celebrating her release from house arrest in Burma.

Haiti cholera spreads over the border

Dominican Republic: Officials have detected the country's first case of cholera, after the outbreak of the disease in neighbouring Haiti.

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The patient is a Haitian migrant who had recently returned from his homeland.

Thailand: Police have found the remains of more than 300 human foetuses hidden in a Buddhist temple in Bangkok. They suspect the foetuses came from illegal abortion clinics.